09/16/2014 04:59 pm ET Updated Nov 16, 2014

Joan Rivers and Chelsea Handler: Antidotes for Self-Doubt

Okay, here's the deal: I love Joan Rivers and Chelsea Handler. Both are women who don't apologize for anything they say, think, or do, and became incredibly successful for not doing so. They inspire me. They drive me to do what I do. They push me not to fear. However, the world has now lost Joan, which I still can't fathom. I miss her so much. I know it sounds like I knew her personally, but I didn't. I just knew her through Fashion Police and Joan Knows Best? but I feel like I knew her. She wore everything on her sleeve and brought us into her world openly and unapologetically. I adored and will continue to adore her.

Though it's MUCH less tragic, cable has now lost Chelsea. Her show, Chelsea Lately, was a nightly form of comedic therapy for me. It was a half hour dose of f**k-it attitude that I used as a consistent reminder. She decided to end the show, and I no longer have that consistent reminder. I need it back. I hurt and ache for it.

Right now, my writing is starting to be noticed, and that's amazing. It's been a slow process, but it is growing. I'm really proud and excited about it, but there's a part of me that buckles under the pressure of the possibility of negative opinions. The potential haters compel me to doubt myself, and I detest the fact that that happens at all. There is no way that everyone will agree with what I have to say or what I think; I realize this. I somehow have to develop a think enough skin to guard myself against any naysayers. My dad told me to cut off and ignore any negativity completely in order to make room for the positivity. I know he's right; it's just hard to remember to do sometimes. I need a shield. Joan and Chelsea were my reinforcements. I need them back.

Self-doubt may quite possibly be the most crippling emotion out there. It's awful, especially when it's in regards to your art, your creation, your heart on paper. I know that the more I get out there, the more my work is read, the possibility for backlash increases. Somehow, someway, I must rise above it all. I must believe in myself enough to keep at it and to believe in my work. I must believe in myself enough to have "no regrets" just as Joan hadn't. She had no regrets for any of her jokes. She never apologized despite any backlash or offense felt by others. She was a comedienne, and comics make fun of everything. I am a writer, and I write about everything. Some people may not agree with what I have to say, and I have to remind myself that that is okay. In an interview, Marlon Wayans said that Joan had given him this essential and powerful piece of advice: "If they don't laugh, if they don't get it, f*ck 'em!" I want to make bracelets that say "WWJRD?" (What Would Joan Rivers Do?). I'd wear mine every day.

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